HOUSTON ASTROS (108-66)
at LOS ANGELES DODGERS (112-59)
World Series – Game 2 – Dodger Stadium – Los Angeles, CA
First pitch: Wednesday, 8:05 p.m. ET
Line: Houston +105, Los Angeles -115, Total: 7.5
The Astros will be looking to even the World Series up with a Game 2 victory at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday.
There was a pair of southpaws on the mound in Game 1, as Dallas Keuchel took the ball for the Astros and Clayton Kershaw was out there for the Dodgers. Kershaw got the best of that matchup, throwing seven innings of one-run ball and striking out 11 batters. It was the best performance of his postseason career and one that silenced a lot of critics. Los Angeles definitely rallied around him in that game and the team certainly has some momentum here. Fortunately for Houston, ace RHP Justin Verlander is going to be on the mound on Wednesday. Verlander has been ridiculous in the postseason, as he is 4-0 with a 1.46 ERA in four appearances. Three of those outings were starts and he should be ready to go on Wednesday. The Dodgers, meanwhile, are sending LHP Rich Hill to the mound. The lefty is 0-0 with a 3.00 ERA in two postseason starts this year. Hill is a very consistent pitcher, but the Dodgers need him to bring his game to another level against Verlander. One great sign for Los Angeles is the fact that SS Corey Seager (Back) was able to play in Game 1. He seemed like a legitimate question mark as of a week ago, but he’s provided a major spark for his team.
Justin Verlander has been exactly what the Astros were hoping they were acquiring when they dealt for him. The righty was a huge reason the team has gotten to this point, as he won all three of his starts before the World Series. He was especially important against the Yankees, as he threw 16.0 innings in two starts and allowed just one earned run in those outings. He also struck out a ridiculous 21 batters over those two starts and will be hoping to keep it up here. Verlander must, however, find a way to throw these Dodgers hitters off. Los Angeles loves to get under pitches and go yard, but Verlander’s stuff will make it hard for them to do that. As for Houston’s offense, expect both 2B Jose Altuve and SS Carlos Correa to be determined in this one. Altuve has been the best hitter in the entire league all season and that has not changed in the playoffs. He also happens to hit lefties well, so this matchup with Hill should favor him. Correa, however, was 0-for-3 in Game 1 and needs to be productive here.
Rich Hill is going to be starting for the Dodgers on Wednesday and the team can use a solid performance out of him here. The Dodgers are currently up 1-0 in the series, but they know that they can’t afford to give home-field advantage back to the Astros. Houston is insanely tough to beat at home, so Los Angeles must take care of business at Dodger Stadium. Hill has been okay during the playoffs, but he’ll need to be better than that here. Going up against Verlander, it’s hard to imagine the Dodgers winning without six or so great innings from Hill. On offense, the Dodgers have been riding the hot bat of 3B Justin Turner. Turner has turned himself into a legitimate superstar in Los Angeles, and he would probably be the team’s MVP if the Dodgers were to go on and win the World Series. He hit a two-run homer for them on Tuesday and is now up to four homers and 14 RBI during the postseason. But also keep an eye on 1B Cody Bellinger in this game, as he is a pretty good candidate to find a way to take Verlander yard. He hits righties a lot better than he hits lefties and his swing is a good match for Verlander’s power pitching.